Jonah 2:9b -10 “…Salvation is of the LORD.

10- And the LORD spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land.

The text in Jonah is very clear. As soon as Jonah confessed that “Salvation is of the LORD”, immediately “the LORD spake unto the fish and it vomited out Jonah upon dry land”. God was finished with the fish and he was finished with Jonah’s lesson on preaching the gospel of Salvation. It was not until Jonah came to that pinnacle in his doctrinal understanding of the LORD, did he confess and admit that this thing of man’s salvation was not of man’s doings nor of man’s works, but entirely of the LORD’s will and work, from start to finish. He is the author and finisher of our faith. PERIOD! Jonah learned this important lesson, although it took him three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, going into the depths of death before he came to this reality in his understanding of his God. Jonah is now a Grace man!

This morning my wife and I watched a popular TV Bible teacher’s attempts to explain away God’s Sovereignty in Salvation. He was teaching from 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 verse 13 – ¶ “But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ”.

Upon reading this text he immediately had the audience turn to Ephesians Chapter 1 verse 4-6, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved, and then he began to methodically explain away the Sovereignty of our Great God in the Salvation of mankind.

It is clear to me and to most every reader of the Word that the Bible is clearly teaching us that before the world was ever spoken into existence, God the Father chose us, “in Christ” unto salvation. We are chosen by God the Father to be a love gift to God the Son, and that in time the Son would redeem, on the Cross with His own Blood, those whom God had given Him in eternity past. But, that TV teacher began to explain that what really happened was that God, in His foreknowledge, looked down in time and saw all those who would accept Christ as Savior and then chose them to salvation, based on their act of choosing Him to be their Savior! That is so wrong on so many levels. God is not dependent upon man’s decisions and then acts based on what man would do. That is so unbiblical that it is ridiculous. The whole thing that he pivots his erroneous doctrine on is man’s freewill. They say that man has freewill and that God can’t violate man’s freewill. They go on to say that God won’t make a man do anything that he does not want to or choose to do. Thus, they are adamant that man’s freewill trumps God’s Sovereign Will. That demonic doctrine is the very basis and backbone of today’s “won’t you decide for Jesus” gospel. It is right out of hell itself.

Nowhere in the Bible are we encouraged or admonished to “accept Jesus as Savior” nor are we implored to “make him Lord of our life” nor are we told anywhere to “make a decision for Christ”, and yet, that is the crux and backbone of most of today’s evangelical doctrine and Church fundamentalism. The 20th and 21st centuries have sold out the pure Gospel of Grace and acquired the new doctrine of “salvation by decision”.

Friend of mine, that strips God of His Sovereignty and His regal act of marking out for Himself, a people, chosen by Him and given to the Son, so that the Son, in time, would bring them into the Household of Faith and that they would become the family of God. That crooked decision doctrine makes our Sovereign God to be a “crystal ball gazer” and looking forward in time to see what man would do, and then reacting based on what He saw man would do. That doctrine and that decision-gospel is the greatest sin of the modern church age. Ignorant, but well-meaning ministers will spend their whole career teaching and preaching the “false gospel of the Laodicean Church age”.

That cheapens our God and makes Him to be less God and it has at it’s core the wrongful thinking that man’s freewill cannot be overpowered by any act of God and that God will not violate man’s sovereign will. Well, that just isn’t Bible; it is not in scripture and never has been. So, where do they get this hellish doctrine of man’s choosing taking precedence over God’s Sovereignty? Or where do they get the idea that salvation is by a lost man’s decision instead of by the power of old-fashioned Holy Spirit conviction and drawing, just as Jesus said?

A careful study of John chapter 17 will prove my point about God choosing us before time and giving us to the Son as a love gift. It is clearly demonstrated in the 17th chapter of John.

We know that we are “heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ”, and we further know that when we believed, we were sealed with the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption. The Spirit within us is the down payment, or earnest of our inheritance. We belong to Him because of what He has done for us and not what we have done. Romans 9:16 is so clear in that it says, “So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy”. Again, just as Jonah discovered after his ordeal in the fish’s belly, that Salvation is of the LORD.

In conclusion, let me say that we, the Church of God, the Body of Christ, should confront any and all clergy that insist upon the false gospel of salvation by decision. It must be stopped, and the true Gospel of Grace presented to lost men, women, boys and girls. The old King James Bible has been used by many Grace preachers to proclaim the Great Gospel of Grace. Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek”. And as the Apostle Peter said, 1Peter 1:3 – 5, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

And lastly, to leave you with the last word from Revelation 19:1 – “And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:” Yes my friends, Salvation is of the LORD!